By Maria and Geoff Gratton
As all couples have, we’ve experienced those defining moments in our life together, including our wedding day and the births of our children. While those continue to resonate with us, we now have another defining moment—one that reset our concept of “normal.”
That defining moment came on December 1, 2012, at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, when our son was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. In less than five minutes our lives were forever changed, and we found ourselves desperately seeking answers in a world that we had never even known existed.
In our small town we learned of another family who had earlier faced a pediatric brain tumor diagnosis. That family encouraged us to reach out to Weill Cornell and the wonderful doctors who specialize in these tumors. It was in early 2013 at Weill Cornell that we learned the name of what had originally been diagnosed as a low-grade tumor: gliomatosis cerebri (GC). In this dark and lonely moment, our random Internet search led us to a comforting web site, Elizabeth’s Hope.
We quickly learned the frightening statistics, including the gross underfunding of federal monies for research and the lack of awareness about pediatric brain tumors. We needed to do something, anything, because doing nothing was not an option.
That was the catalyst for the establishment of our organization, which we named Our Cure 4 Life. We held our first board meeting on January 25, 2015, with a mission to fund research, raise awareness, and provide support for those afflicted with rare, inoperable brain tumors. We quickly launched a web site (www.ourcure4life.org), created a Facebook page, and are now executing our mission. To that end, we have two major events planned in 2015: our first annual “Giving on the Green” golf tournament (scheduled for May 29 at The Golf Club at Windham) and the Our Cure 4 Life Gala in September 2015, which aligns with Pediatric Brain Cancer Awareness month.
Today we live by a new set of rules about living in the present: The present moment is the only moment available to us, and it is the door to all moments. – Thich Nhat Hanh
Together with our newfound family within the Children’s Brain Tumor Project, we will make great strides in our combined missions. We remain hopeful and encourage you to help us spread the word, provide support, and raise the funds necessary to find a cure—Our Cure 4 Life.